Return of the kayaking doctor!

Return of the kayaking doctor!

Hi All,

So my last blog was at the start of April and I can’t quite believe we are already in July…especially as it’s raining all the time. Why?! Cruel Blighty never likes to give us a good dry spell does she?

This has upset me greatly but I have mainly been indoors. Dr Martin Lee however, has been kayaking through this miserable climate since my last blog. Paddling ‘Round the Isles for Rheumatoid’ he has kayaked around the ENTIRE UK mainland in 97 days.

Having left on the 1st April, I think Martin has had approximately 2 weeks of sunshine and these were kindly bestowed on him by the west Scottish coast - of all places! This apparently was quite a relief as it was the part of his journey that he was most dreading. Not that he’s avoided danger mind you. There’s been plenty of hairy moments, the worst of which washed Martin ashore with half of his equipment! Still he carried on and will paddle his last few miles today into London where we will cheer him onto dry land. Hurrah!

Dr Lee’s dedication and strength of character has been incredible to follow. I don’t believe anything so big has been undertaken to raise awareness of rheumatoid arthritis and he has raised so much money for NRAS. Martin is a consultant rheumatologist and chose his profession after growing up seeing his Aunt struggle with RA. NRAS has been of some help to her and Martin therefore decided to do this incredible challenge for the charity, but also for all those in the UK (and abroad!) struggling to make people understand rheumatoid arthritis. He has done a fantastic job along the way of explaining the condition on radio stations and to people he has met, on top of the crazy mileage each day! The support Martin has had as he has travelled around the UK has been amazing and I think his efforts have meant a great deal to all these people.

If you would like to support Martin and share his challenge, it’s not too late to spread the news – facebook.com/martinkayaking. You can also donate at virginmoneygiving.com/marti... or find out more at martinkayaking.co.uk . Thanks to those people who have shared his story on here, every little helps! Anyone who would like to come to London last minute to wave Martin in, we will be at the Surrey Docks Watersports Centre/down at the river at 2pm today!

The other excitement for this weekend is the NRAS 10k run which takes place on Sunday. It has a reputation for being a tad hilly and not for the faint hearted. After my Olympic Park Run triumph (I finished it..) at the end of March, I pretty much gave up training and have been told off for ‘cramming’ my running in this week in order to prepare for Sunday’s event.

Luckily my colleagues and I have discovered a way of diverting the attention away from our slow pace. We are dressing up. As the Village People. For no apparent reason.

Still, I’m sure it will be a laugh...if we don't get rained off that is! If anyone pities us enough to donate here’s our page – justgiving.com/Victoria-Bac... which also has a fetching photoshop masterpiece of us in YMCA mode. I wonder how we’ll look on Sunday…keep an eye out on the NRAS Facebook page if you want a giggle – facebook.com/Nationalrheuma...

Wishing everyone a good weekend!

Ruth

Online & Social Media Coordinator

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